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One of my tools is behaving strangely. How do I reset it?

Jan 30, 2011 6:40 AM

For every tool in Photoshop's Tool Box, the user may choose to fully reset JUST that tool to its default settings.

To do this, look up to the Options Bar. On the far left side you will see a button which displays an icon of the currently selected tool. This is the Tool Preset picker. Right-click (or ctrl+click) the button to get a contextual menu with two entries:

Reset Tool and 
Reset All Tools

The first thing to try when a tool is not acting like you expect it should is to apply the command "Reset Tool" from this menu.

Often this will cure a problem, and by starting your Photoshop troubleshooting with this procedure you aren't resetting Photoshop's entire behavior and environment to factory default in a wholesale manner. Instead, you're just getting that particular tool back to its default settings, leaving the rest of Photoshop's settings alone.

Also see the attached graphic in the next post.

If this doesn't cure the problem, you can delete and reset all of your Photoshop preferences to their factory default values.

1. Simultaneously hold down Shift+Option+Command keys
2. Continue to hold down those keys, launch Photoshop and wait until you see the prompt asking if you wish to "delete the Photoshop settings file."
3. Release those keys. Click "Yes."

You should now have a fresh set of preference settings, returned to their default values.

(Thanks to Len Hewitt and Phos)

  • Pierre Courtejoie
    7,052 posts
    Jan 11, 2006
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 22, 2011 3:54 AM   in reply to Neil_Keller

    Updated thread with more legible text, and incorporated the suggestions in the original post.


    If you get the reset Photoshop settings prompt at startup without holding down any key, and are running Mac Os 10.6.5 or 10.6.6, see this thread:

    Delete the Adobe Photoshop Settings file? at startup / Tools act strangely.

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